Bizarre, bizarre, bizarre.
Dopey dancer (Jessica Harper) shows up at midnight (in the rain of course) at a creepy dance school somewhere in Germany (though the film is Italian) and gets involved in the weird goings on. Seems like the girls keep disappearing.
Directed by Dario Argento and with thundering music by something called Goblin, SUSPIRIA starts out creepy and never lets up. The art/set direction is lurid in eye-blasting reds and blues with black lacquered doors and weirdly shaped windows. The whole school is like a fun house of stairways and corridors.
Joan Bennett (67 or so at the time) teeters around in heels and scoop-necked dresses and wears a lacquered black beehive hair do. Creepy. Alida Valli is a hoot as the Nazi Dance Mistress who stomps about barking orders while wearing a fixed and hideous smile. Harper never seems to know what's going on and wanders around in a daze--the typical horror movie heroine.
More than a few jumps here with Argento's rapid cuts and close ups. You'll never think of razor wire in quite the same way again....
It's Argento's masterpiece, although the second of his "Mothers" films, Infeno, is also superb. Apparently Argento was heartbroken that the film stock he used in making SUSPIRIA is now totally unobtainable so he can never again get those colours.
Also Love (and I wish they would release) Dario Argento's
1970's "Uccello dalle piume di cristallo, L' "( The Bird with the Crystal Plumage) and 1971's "4 mosche di velluto grigio" (Four Flies on Grey Velvet )
Good scary films, This man needs a Box-Set.....
I can't remember that I've ever seen one of Argento's films besides SUSPIRIA..... Certainly would be interesting to look into... I wonder if anything is available in the US